These are my picks as the top 5 at every position other than kicker and punter. These are not my top Draft picks at every position.
1. Paxton Lynch – Memphis: If you read this blog often you would have seen that I have been promoting Lynch since last season. You just don’t see that many 6’6″ or 6’7″ Quarterbacks that are this athletic. He has the strong arm, and possesses the skills to make the touch throws as well. If his pocket collapses, this guy can get you a first down. We don’t know his official 40 time yet, but it has to be pretty impressive because this young Quarterback has some wheels.
2. Baker Mayfield – Oklahoma: Speaking of wheels, Mayfield is a tremendous athlete and a scrambler extraordinaire. I flirted with the idea of naming him my top guy just because Oklahoma is a different team with Mayfield taking snaps. He may not excite the NFL scouts because he’s about 6-1, 210, but he is a tremendous athlete that has the arm. Lynch was unwanted coming out of high
school, but Mayfield even more so. He was a walk-on at Texas Tech and again at Oklahoma. I would not be surprised in the least if Mayfield took his team to the Playoffs. I wrote about the OU Spring Game in 2014 and predicted greatness for Mayfield and I enjoy it when I am correct.
3. Jared Goff – California: Everybody had Goff as the number one guy in the nation before the season started and he has done nothing wrong while leading his team to bowl eligibility for the first time in a while. The problem does not lie with Goff so much as the emergence of Lynch and Mayfield. While I will stand by my earlier comments on Goff, he still has a lot of ability and can make the throws. He lacks the mobility of the others on this list, but he is athletic enough to run for the occasional first down.
4. Trevone Boykin – TCU: Boykin is still Boykin. He has the arm and the feet to be a phenomenal Quarterback and he still is. The pundits dropped him just because his team is not blowing many teams out this season. It’s still a team game and Boykin is a fine Quarterback. His numbers are just as good as last season, and the experts are silly. I will be curious as to what NFL Scouts decide to do with Boykin, but he is one of the top college Quarterbacks in the nation.
5. Deshaun Watson – Clemson: This is a good example of how recruiting does actually pay off. The top 2 guys on this list were lightly recruited, but Watson was the number one guy at his position. Watson is a great team leader, is extremely athletic and is another guy with a strong arm. Watson beat out Chad Kelly at Clemson which caused Kelly to transfer to a Junior College and then to Ole Miss. Watson played early as a true freshman last season and showed his enormous talent and potential. But, he had some injury problems. This season, he has been injury free and his team is still unbeaten on the season and ranked #1 right now by some.
5A. Carson Wentz – North Dakota State: Wentz could wind up being the best Quarterback of this season when all is said and done. You really never know how an FCS player is going to adjust to the NFL, but Wentz is a similar type of athlete to Paxton Lynch, but he’s 6’5″ and 235 instead of 6’7″ and 245. He was not recruited out of high school because he played a different position up until his senior year when he moved to Quarterback. He has the perfect NFL size, the strong arm and he is a gifted athlete. The knock on him is going to be the competition, but all college players have the same problems when moving to the NFL.
Dak Prescott – Mississippi State
Cody Kessler – USC
Marquise Williams – North Carolina
Jacoby Brissett – North Carolina State
Connor Cook – Michigan State
Mason Rudolph – Oklahoma State
1. Derrick Henry – Alabama: The Yulee, Florida product is the all time leading rusher in high Sugarland Express
school football history. Taller and bigger than most Running Backs at 6-3, 240, Henry may not test all that well at the NFL combine but he has what you call football speed. Nobody runs him down when the breaks into the open field. Henry was never mentioned in any Heisman conversation until Alabama thumped LSU and Leonard Fournette a couple of weeks ago. Now, it appears he is the front runner with several 200 plus yard rushing games. He is a supreme power runner with speed enough to pull away from most any defenders. I blogged about Henry last year here:
2. Leonard Fournette – LSU: Fournette was all the college football rage a few weeks ago and the Heisman was practically his. Then, Alabama happened and down went Leonard Fournette. But, he is still the same back he was when he was running for over 200 yards per game, he just ran up against a better team and a great run defense. Even though he was shut down by Alabama, Fournette could still run for close to 2,000 yards on the season.
3. Dalvin Cook – Florida State: I wouldn’t have a problem at all with Cook being at the top of this list. As Cook goes, so goes Florida State. He is as explosive of a runner as the college football world has seen. He’s got a burst after he hits the hole that is unbelievable. Cook is smaller than the top guys on this list at 5-11, 200, but he is the quickest and the shiftiest. Cook missed one game and sat out much of several others and still has some of the best yardage totals in the nation. He topped the 200 yards in a single game barrier twice and almost ran for 200 against top ranked Clemson. He may be the most electrifying back in the country.
4. Ezekiel Elliott – Ohio State: I know what SEC fans are going to say, but I still can’t get Elliott running off and leaving Alabama defenders in last year’s playoff game out of my head. He ran for over 200 yards against one of the best run defense in the country year in and year out. Elliott is
another big back with great speed at 6-0, 225. The junior from St Louis will declare for the NFL after this year and surely will be a high draft pick.
5. Christian McCaffrey – Stanford: McCaffrey showed the world a lot of potential as a true freshman and left a lot of fans wanting the ball in his hands more often. That has happened this season as McCaffrey became the Stanford featured back. After a slow start, McCaffrey just ran wild and had two over 200 yard games and crushed the 1,000 yard barrier. With probably 4 games remaining including a Pac 12 Championship game, McCaffrey is poised to run for possibly around 1,800 yards on the season. McCaffrey is fast and smooth and gets to a top speed extremely quickly. He also returns punts and kicks.
1. JuJu Smith-Schuster – USC: Smith is a big, strong receiver at around 6-2, 215 and has outstanding speed, hands and body control. Don’t worry about numbers, this guy is a big play waiting to happen. He was the best true freshman Wide Receiver in the nation last year and this year he is probably the best overall.
2. Corey Coleman – Baylor: There was talk of Coleman for the Heisman Trophy last week, but that all died down when they lost to Oklahoma. Heisman voters are as fickle as they come. Coleman is an explosive receiver that is not the big type of receiver that the NFL craves these days, but he is big enough and strong enough to help some team. He generally catches everything he gets his hands on which is what top receivers tend to do.
3. Josh Doctson – TCU: I am not picking receivers based on what the NFL will think of them, but the pros will really love Doctson. He is 6-3, 195 and very athletic. He tends to make the acrobatic catches rather easily like a Lynn Swann of Pittsburgh Steelers days. He has excellent size, speed and hands which makes him one of the better Wide Receivers in the nation.
4. Laquon Treadwell – Ole Miss: Treadwell is a beast and has an unparalleled work ethic. After being severely injured against Auburn last year, Treadwell worked his way back and into shape and may be better than ever. He might even should be higher on this list. He has good size and hands. He is not the fastest guy, but he is fast enough and has a tendency to make the big play while being well covered.
5. Will Fuller – Notre Dame: Not a big guy at 6-0, 185, Fuller is a burner that has a knack for the deep ball. He didn’t have a good game against Mackenzie Alexander of Clemson, nor against Wake Forest last week. But, other than that, he has been Notre Dame’s big play guy over the past couple of seasons. He is a junior and has already announced he will return for his senior season at Notre Dame. Fuller, with his great speed and explosiveness, is a fun player to watch.
1. Bucky Hodges – Virginia Tech: Hodges is one of the more athletic big Tight Ends you are going to see. He is listed at 6-7, 240 and he can run and jump like a Wide Receiver. I am not sold on his blocking skills, and he came to Virginia Tech as a Quarterback. But, he is like a gazelle and can make the circus catches time and time again.
2. Hunter Henry – Arkansas: Most experts have Hunter Henry as their top Tight End and I have zero problem with that. He is a very good blocker as well as a receiver. His heady play against Auburn in Overtime kept them in the game before they went on to win it. He blocks well, runs well and catches the ball well. What else are you looking for in a Tight End?
3. Jordan Leggett – Clemson: Another big and gifted Tight End is Jordan Leggett of Clemson. Leggett played last season, but burst onto the scene spectacularly this season with the rise of the Clemson Tigers in the rankings. He is an excellent blocker and he does catch the ball really well.
4. Jake Butt – Michigan: Tall at 6-6, Butt can make the difficult catches look easy. He is not
tremendously fast, but he runs well enough and has the good hands you are looking for in a Tight End that you want to go to in a tight situation. Butt had some injury problems in the past, but has been healthy all season and has been one of new Quarterback Jake Rudock’s go to guys.
5. Bryce Williams – East Carolina: Williams is 6-6, 260 and runs almost like a Wide Receiver. He is a mismatch in most any situation. The Carolina offense feds Bryce Williams the ball often and he generally makes the catch. Like Hodges, he is more of a receiver than a blocker right now. But, he is so big and he runs so well, that he has to be one of the top Tight Ends around.
1. Laremy Tunsil – Ole Miss: Everybody has Tunsil as their number 1 Offensive Tackle and that’s not a problem for me. He was suspended for the first 7 games for off the field issues, but came back with a vengeance. These are the kind of Tackles that I like, they are big enough, but well conditioned and not too much fat. He is 6-5 and about 300 to 305 and can move laterally well with the great feet that a great lineman needs. He has had his problems with Auburn’s Carl Lawson when Lawson is healthy.
2. Ronnie Stanley – Notre Dame: Stanley was my top guy until the Clemson game and he had more than his share of troubles with Clemson Defensive End Shaq Lawson. But, then, who hasn’t? Stanley is a tough guy out of Las Vegas Bishop Gorman High School and he is similar to Tunsil being around 6-5, 315. There’s little excess fat and he moves well like Tunsil as a Left Tackle should. Notre Dame has one of the top Offensive Lines in the country and Stanley is their leader.
3. Jack Conklin – Michigan State: Coming out of high school, Conklin was unranked by the recruiting services and now he is one of the top Left Tackles in the nation. Like the rest of the
Offensive Line at Michigan State, Conklin has had his issues this season. Last year, he gave up maybe one sack all year long. He has still be good, but has had to fight through the injuries to even remain on the field. He is 6-6, 325, just slightly bigger than the 2 guys rated over him by me, but he has the same attributes with the quick feet and agility.
4. Taylor Decker – Ohio State: The Buckeyes best Offensive Lineman is a giant of a man at 6-8, 315 and even at that size he has the athletic ability to be a top pass protector. Clearly, he is also a great run blocker demonstrated by the effectiveness of the Ohio State run game and Ezekiel Elliott. I would project him as a first round draft pick in the next NFL Draft.
5. Jason Spriggs – Indiana: Another great Big 10 Offensive Lineman and at a surprising school in Indiana. Shockingly, the Hoosiers have one of the better Offensive Lines in college football with Spriggs at Left Tackle, Dan Feeney at Right Guard and Dimitric Camiel at Right Tackle. Spriggs is ideally sized at 6-7, 305 and he is equally good at run or pass blocking.
1. Dan Feeney – Indiana: Many call Feeney the best player on the Hoosier team and that’s unusual for an Offensive Guard. Feeney is particularly devastating in the run game as he often just blows people off the line of scrimmage. He is 6-4, 310 and my pick as the top Offensive Guard in the country. The entire Hoosier Offensive Line is very good.
2. Ben Braden – Michigan: The Michigan Left Guard is listed as 6-6, 330. He is quick and agile and equally effective in the run and pass game. Very impressive looking specimen that can drive people off the line of scrimmage.
3. Joshua Garnett – Stanford: Garnett was one of the top rated Offensive Linemen in the high school ranks a few years ago and translated well into the college game. The same should be true to the NFL. He is 6-5, 320 and is just a dominating run blocker especially.
4. Christian Westerman – Arizona State: Some called Westerman a bust because he signed with Auburn and didn’t start there. He transferred back home to Arizona State and has been a beast at Left Guard for the Sun Devils. Strongest guy on the team benching over 500 pounds. Those that aren’t impressed with Westerman, probably have not seen him.
5. Landon Turner – North Carolina: The Tar Heels are one of the more improved teams in the nation this season. Turner and his 4 other Offensive Line cohorts all returned from last season and they are all good, but Turner is probably the best. At 6-4, 325, Turner is another dominating and devastating run blocker in an Offense that is basically imposing it’s will on opponents this season.
1. Kyle Friend – Temple: This is a guy that you would want to call your friend if you know what’s good for you. Pardon the cheesy line, but he reportedly did 46 repetitions with 225 pounds on the bench press. That’s just a ridiculous accomplishment. He also supposedly ran the 40 yard dash in 4.95 seconds which is really good for an Offensive Lineman. He is only 6-2 which might turn off some NFL people, but he is 305 and he can hold his own with just about anyone. In games versus Penn State and Notre Dame, Friend didn’t have much of a problem with those quality Defensive Linemen. The only negative on Friend, other than his height, is that he tends to snap the ball low occasionally.
2. Jack Allen – Michigan State: Last year’s All American and like so many others this season Allen has struggled with injuries and has had to miss some games. When healthy, Allen is still a formidable blocker in the Michigan State Offensive line. He teams with his younger brother Brian Allen and Jack Conklin to form a solid left side of the Michigan State Offensive Line.
3. Nick Martin – Notre Dame: Younger brother of starting Dallas Cowboy Offensive Guard Zach Martin. Nick is another leader on one of the top Offensive Lines in the country. He is a little more ideally sized at 6-4, 305 and he beat out former starting Center Matt Hegarty who has since graduated and transferred to Oregon where he currently starts.
4. Evan Boehm – Missouri: Boehm is a tough guy and a beast at 6-3, 315. He started at Offensive Guard as a true freshman and then moved to Center as a sophomore. He started 40 games going into his senior season and is a team leader for the Tigers. Missouri has had it’s problems offensively this year after winning the SEC East the previous two seasons, but the problem has not been with excellent Center Evan Boehm or Tackle Connor McGovern.
5. Ryan Kelly – Alabama: Kelly is a leader of the excellent Alabama Offensive Line that opens holes for Heisman Trophy leader Derrick Henry. Kelly is one of those good Midwestern Linemen coming to the South from West Chester, Ohio. He is almost perfectly sized at 6-5, 300 and an outstanding run blocker. Duh, you have to block for the run at Alabama.
Max Tuerk – USC: Would be on list if not for going down with an injury.
Dan Voltz – Wisconsin: Also injured or would be top 2 or 3.
Graham Shuler – Stanford:
Robert Kugler – Purdue:
Matt Skura – Duke:
Jake Norton – Clemson: Another injury tragedy.
1. Joey Bosa – Ohio State: My pick as the guy taken first in next year’s draft. I surely wish he would return to Ohio State to play with his younger brother Nick, but you can’t walk away from the money if you are going to be one of the very top guys taken. Last season, Bosa was one of the nation’s top sack artist, but his numbers are down this season. He missed the first game due to suspension and has a lot of Quarterback hurries this year, but only 4 Quarterback sacks. He does have 15 tackles for loss with several games remaining. Bosa is a threat to get to the Quarterback on any play and is a very intimidating player. Some people have Robert Nkemdiche as their top guy, but Bosa is more
productive by far. Great grandson of a former Mob Boss, but you didn’t hear that from me in case a mobster reads this blog.
2. Shaq Lawson – Clemson: The Tiger defense has been pretty salty over the past few years and Lawson is a pure beast. He gave Notre Dame All American Left Tackle Ronnie Stanley fits all night long in their early season match up, and he generally lives in an opponents backfield. He is 6-3, 270 and you wouldn’t think the NFL would love him, but last year’s early draft pick Dante Fowler was about the same size and they have many similarities. So far on the season, Lawson has 17.5 tackles for loss. Might I suggest to Offensive Coordinators to run the other way?
3. Carl Nassib – Penn State: Nassib is the younger brother of NFL Quarterback Ryan Nassib, a former Syracuse player. He is a former walk-on that put on about 50 pounds of muscle while at Penn State. He is currently 6-7, 275 and a pass rushing monster. On the season, Nassib has 15.5 Quarterback sacks with 3 games remaining and 19.5 tackles for loss. Maybe his best stat on the season is 6 forced fumbles. Right now, he is 6th on the team in tackles. Carl Nassib has a motor that never stops and with his size I wold want him on my team if I was an NFL GM. This guy is one of the more productive players in the entire country.
4. Myles Garrett – Texas A%M: Very athletic and fast player that is great against the pass. So far, he has 10.5 sacks and 17 tackles for loss. For me, sometimes he seems to take plays off and he can be run on fairly well. But, running away from him, he can run down a play. Garrett has excellent speed coming off the edge and makes things tough on Offensive Tackles. He is listed as 6-5, 262 and this guy’s potential is unlimited.
5. Emmanuel Ogbah – Oklahoma State: While I am not quite buying into Oklahoma State’s goodness, they are undefeated. Ogbah is one of college football’s best kept secrets. He is 6-4, 275 and is good against the run and the pass. He has 11 sacks so far on the season and 15.5 tackles for loss. Most impressively, he has 17 Quarterback hurries and 2 fumbles forced. He has the size and the quickness to play Defensive End, or he could eventually move inside.
5A. Deforest Buckner – Oregon: I have Buckner rated a little lower on my best college Defensive Ends, but that doesn’t change the fact that he will be a top 15 or 20 NFL Draft pick in this year’s draft. I could be wrong, but he is better than last year’s other Defensive End at Oregon Arik Armstead and he went really high in the first round picked up by San Francisco. Buckner is 6-7, 300 and is a talented athlete. Currently he is third on the team in tackles from his End position.
5B. Shawn Oakman – Baylor: I had to list this guy just because of his size. He is 6-9, 275 and has enormous potential. Clearly he does not live up to the way he looks because he is ripped and extremely athletic, but only has 4.5 sacks on the season against bad competition. He is from Pennsylvania and signed with Penn State originally, but defected to Baylor after the scandal. I can’t help believe that he would have been an All American lined up with the excellent Penn State Defensive Line.
1. A’Shawn Robinson – Alabama: Robinson was a monster as a true freshman two years ago and was somewhat disappointing last year. He is once again living up to his enormous potential. He is really athletic for a 6-4, 315 pound Defensive Lineman and almost impossible to block right now. He is clearly a great run stopper because you can’t run on Bama, but he’s also a really good pass rusher from the interior of the Defensive Line. He should be a first round pick and he should make an outstanding NFL Defensive Tackle.
2. Austin Johnson – Penn State: I love Penn State’s Defensive Line with Johnson, Anthony Zettel, Carl Nassib and Garrett Sickels. Johnson is 2nd on his team in tackles and at 6-4, 325 he is really
talented. Against San Diego State, he returned a fumble 71 yards for a Touchdown. Like Robinson, he is really good against both the run and the pass. He might even be a little bit quicker.
3. Jonathon Allen – Alabama: Unlike Danny Kanell, I have always thought Alabama was one of the best teams in the country. I believe in talent and Bama has it by the truckload. Nobody can run the ball on Alabama mostly thanks to A’Shawn Robinson, Jarran Reed and Jonathon Allen. Reed is probably best against the run, while Reed is best against the pass. Robinson is the best of the three at both. Allen has 9 Quarterback sacks so far with games remaining to be played. He is the smallest of the trio at 6-3, 285.
4. Jihad Ward – Illinois: Philadelphia native, Ward plays every play like he’s involved in an actual Jihad. He is 6-6, 295 and is not the best pass rusher. But, he is really good against the run. Ward has ideal size and is a talented athlete. I believe he is a very underrated player and with his size and athletic ability could be a really popular player with NFL teams. He must perform well at the combine, too.
5. Robert Nkemdiche – Ole Miss: Nkemdiche was the number one recruit in the nation a few years back. Some will scoff at my placing him here, but they have him rated based solely on potential and I am rating him on production. Nkemdiche will be either the first or second player picked in the next NFL Draft, but does that make him the best Defensive Tackle in college football? He is 6-4, 300 and will test off of the charts at the NFL Combine. After almost 3 full seasons, he has 5.5 Quarterback sacks. I will say this, potentially Nkemdiche is the best player in America. But, on the actual playing field, I have seen too many Offensive Guards drive him off of the ball. Nkemdiche was moved inside last year so that teams couldn’t run away from him, but in my opinion he should have stayed on the outside.
5A. Andrew Billings – Baylor: The Baylor Bear defense is always pretty average to poor, but Billings is a beast. Oakman and Billings both are animals up front. Billings is 6-2, 310 and an immovable object in the Defensive Line. Most Draft gurus have Billings being taken in the first round in the next NFL Draft. If your team needs a run stopper, this could be your guy.
Jarran Reed – Alabama
Anthony Zettel – Penn State
1. Jaylon Smith – Notre Dame: The best Linebacker in the country, in my opinion. Smith is 6-2, 240 and legends have him running a 4.4 40 yard dash a few years ago. It’s hard to tell how accurate that 40 time is, but Smith is a talented Linebacker that can run. Smith was third on the Fighting Irish team in tackles as a true freshman and improved during his sophomore season to team leadership in
tackles. He has maintainted that this season in leading the Irish to a possible playoff position.
2. Leonard Floyd – Georgia: Floyd is a tall, rangy Outside Linebacker that has been extremely productive for the Bulldogs over the past two seasons. Georgia uses him more as a Defensive End type and he keeps a super talented sophomore Lorenzo Carter on the sideline. Floyd is 6-4, 230 and is the Bulldogs third leading tackler behind fellow Linebackers Jake Ganus and Tim Kimbrough.
3. Cassanova McKinzy – Auburn: McKinzy is a good sized Linebacker at 6-3, 255 and is an excellent pass rusher. The Tigers have been inconsistent this season, but McKinzy has been one of their most consistent players over the past 3 seasons. He is big, strong and he will bring the leather. McKinzy led the team in tackles as a sophomore in 2013 when the Auburn Tigers won the SEC Championship. Last season, he was second in tackles and this year he is third so far.
4. Su’a Cravens – USC: The former standout Safety has been at Outside Linebacker for the past couple of seasons. On the smaller side at 6-1, 225, he makes up for lack of ideal size with great speed. Cravens was a starting Safety last season but moved to Linebacker during the season. Cravens has used his speed and quickness to become an effective pass rusher and a solid Outside Linebacker.
5. Jalen Reeves-Maybin – Tennessee: Like Su’a Cravens, Reeves-Maybin is a smaller Linebacker with good speed. Reeves-Maybin is aggressive, runs to the ball well and is the Volunteers leading tackler
1. Reggie Ragland – Alabama: Surprisingly these beast of a man stayed around for his senior season, but it may well be worth it by improved draft standings and a possible national title. I know everyone wants to leave early these days, but it’s good to stay in school if you are not a guaranteed
first round guy. Ragland leads the team in tackles and is especially good against the run, but also in pass protection and in rushing the Quarterback.
2. Kentrell Brothers – Missouri: Not only did Brothers lead his team in tackles, he also led the entire nation. Missouri had a rough season, but the defense was really tough and Brothers is one of the top Linebackers in the country. He’s not the prototype size wise standing only 6-1, but he is really strong against the run and he picked off 2 passes.
3. Blake Martinez – Stanford: Hard hitting Inside Linebacker that demonstrates a typical Stanford defender. He’s not the biggest, or the fastest, but he gets to the ball in a hurry and brings plenty of wood with him.
4. Tyler Matakevich – Temple: Senior Linebacker and four year starter that nobody really wanted out of high school. He is much like Martinez in that he just makes plays and all over the field. Matakevich might be the best pass defender in this list of Linebackers with 5 Interceptions on the season.
5. Raekwon McMillan – Ohio State: McMillan is just a sophomore and he was one of the better players as a true freshman last year on the Buckeye’s championship run. I thought that McMillan was the top defensive high school recruit coming out of the country in his recruiting class and nothing that I have seen since has proven otherwise.
1. Jalen Ramsey – Florida State: Some may debate who the best CB is in the college ranks, but the NFL scouts rave probably most about Jalen Ramsey. Most of the reason is his size since larger Corners are all the rage these days. Ramsey played CB as a true freshman on the national
championship team and moved to Safety last year, but back to Corner this year. He’s a much better CB than he is a Safety.
2. Vernon Hargreaves III – Florida: Those that don’t like Ramsey best, generally like Hargreaves over at his main rival’s school. Hargreaves is a 3 year starter at CB for the Gators and has been magnificent from day one. He’s about 5-11, 200 and plays the Corner about as well as anyone in the country and is strong enough against the run.
3. Mackensie Alexander – Clemson: Alexander may be the single best cover Corner out there if judging by his performance against Notre Dame’s Will Fuller. Opposing offenses avoid Alexander like the plague.
4. Jordan Lewis – Michigan: Slightly undersized guy, but a huge play maker at Corner Back. Lewis picks up the job of covering the opponents top WR and he does well with it. He also returns kicks which just demonstrates how much speed he possesses.
5. Adoree Jackson – USC: My pick at the beginning of the season as the top Cornerback in the nation. Neither Jackson, or the Trojans, had the season many expected due to off field issues among other things. Jackson is something of a modern day Iron Man playing defense, offense and returning punts and kicks.
1. Jabrill Peppers – Michigan: The Wolverines Iron man, Peppers is not only a great Defensive Back, but is also a top athlete that plays Wide Receiver and Running Back on offense and he returns punts for Michigan. Coming out of high school, Peppers was ranked as the #2 recruit behind only Leonard Fournette and both have really worked out well so far.
2. Jayron Kearse – Clemson: The nephew of the Freak, Jevon Kearse, Jayron is something of a freak in is own right. He plays Safety and is 6-5, 220. He is super athletic and can run down most anyone from behind.
3. Jeremy Cash – Duke: One of Duke’s best players the past several years, Cash is another large Defensive Back like Kearse of Clemson. He’s not quite as big at 6-2, 210 but he is a sure tackler and a team leader for the Blue Devils.
4. Vonn Bell – Ohio State: Big time player that comes up with timely Interceptions and Fumble recoveries for the Buckeyes. He had 2 picks resulting in a score and another fumble return for 6 points. He’s also among the tackle leaders for Ohio State on a really good defense. All of the better players on defense for the Buckeyes are from Georgia and Florida.
5. Quin Blanding – Virginia: Very talented player that’s still only a sophomore. He was a 5 star recruit and came in and made an immediate impact for the Cavaliers last season. He led his team in tackles as a true freshman and was 2nd this year. Good sized Safety with plenty of talent and speed. He could actually spin down to a Linebacker position some day.